Do you remember a few days ago, when I said I wanted to get my affairs in order? Not because I'm going to croak, although I do feel a cold coming on. I said I wanted to get better about my finances, because I kind of live payday to payday, and do you know what I wish I had right now? Is a Payday. Oh my god, salty nuts AND nougat.
Why so shubby?
Shubby. Oh my god, why so type-y.
And didn't I just say last time that I had 79 dollars or something, and it was payday? So, see?
Well, my friend Kaye, of Marty and Kaye, wrote me the day I posted that. "I can help you get your money straightened out," she wrote me. "I can do all that. Marty can be your fun friend. I can be your practical friend."
Really, all my friends are my practical friend. Unless I start hanging with Courtney Love, that's probably always gonna be the case. Just the other day, I asked one of the Alexes I'm friends with at work for some advice. "I need a grownup," I said to her.
Anyway, so Kaye and I made a plan that she'd come over yesterday and we'd make, like, a ... what's it called, a fudge it or a budgie or a bundt or something? This thing? With numbers? Where you plan what you're gonna spend? I don't know.
Kaye came over in stern taskmaster mode, and now I'm making this sound like it's about to turn into a story from the Penthouse Forum. "I never thought this would happen to me."
She had charts and folders and things, because Kaye's the kind of person who'd come over prepared with charts and folders and things. "So, you don't have to tell me how much you bring in if you don't want to. People get touchy about money."
Oh, please. Have we met? I told her all.
"Oh, okay. So you have quite a bit to work with. It's not that you don't bring home enough, June," she said. "It's just that you're spending too much. Let's go over what you spend each month."
"You wanna start with personal grooming?"
"I thought I'd save that till last," she said, looking peaked.
We talked mortgage and insurance and cable and pets (Kaye has one measly animal. One! Can you imagine? Who lives that way? I told her what I spend on vet bills and food and flea meds so everyone can get bladder cancer and boarding and bowls and treats and collars and at the end of that, she was all, "Are you sure? Wow.")
She asked about hobbies, and I was all, see above. Fur is my hobby. Lately, with all the proliferation of puppies going through here, I've been a fur trader. And then I said, "You want to get to personal grooming? Because, hobby."
But no. She wasn't ready. We talked Four Oh Wonks, and it's funny every time I make that joke. We talked Amazon Prime and Sirius Radio. We talked Weight Watchers.
We talked about what I'd be willing to give up and what had to stay. Like, she was all, can't you cut your own grass? And do you remember that one picture where Edsel was a puppy, and he wanted to play with the squirrel toy, and it looks like Tallulah is laughing about it?
That's how I was about cutting my own grass.
Also, puppy Edsel.
Anyway, we finally got to personal grooming. "So what do you spend a month on it? I'm ready," said Kaye. So I listed the stuff I do, amortized. The Botox, the Juviderm, the pedicures, the manicures, the waxes, the highlights, the base color, the Curly Girl special shampoo/conditioner/gel. The impulse buys of makeup.
"Now, this is me living cheaply, because I'm single now, so I don't go to the department stores at all anymore," I smugged, not noticing that Kaye had gotten sort of wan. I mean, 20 minutes earlier I'd been discussing Tallulah's illness, and how it had cost me, and she'd been like, "Wait. Wait wait wait. Do you not have any sort of SAVINGS?"
Poor Kaye. Once the personal grooming portion of our day was over, I said, "Was that as bad as you thought?"
"It was actually worse. It was worse than I thought." Whatever with Kaye. It costs a lot of money to look this cheap.
Anyway, then we got down to brass tacks, which it turns out I can't afford. I had to agree to give stuff up, in order to have, you know, savings. Savings. Pfft. So we discussed, and Kaye made me a list. She called it: No Need-y, No Buy-y. This is why I'm the word person and she's the numbers person.
I agreed to no more Juviderm right away. It doesn't make that big of a difference. And no more calling Jimmy John's from my desk at work and meeting them here, which is my little challenge several days a week. Can I beat Jimmy John's? I am BANNED from Target for six months, because I go there for a Glue Stik and come home with 47 throw rugs and lamps and eye shadows. Oh, and no new makeup till I run completely out.
No pedicures. I am allowed to purchase ONE SAD NAIL COLOR to do my nails myself. "Well, I also need a top coat," I told Stern Taskmaster Kaye. Down-to-earth women never get me.
Anyway, we're gonna meet again in a month and see how it's going and have I saved any money. I already know I'm capable of doing this, because I did it before. Of course, then I was married, and not trying to reel in any men. This is why I feel strongly about keeping my Botox. But maybe I'll get so excited about having savings that I'll give that up and go around looking rich but frowny, much like Queen Elizabeth. She's married, isn't she?
Further report$ as development$ warrant. See what I did, there?
See you in savings,